The West Riding has in London an artist who is already recognized as one of the men of note in the younger generation of English sculptors. Mr. Henry Moore, who is now 28 years of age, is the son of a Castleford miner. He attended the Castleford Secondary School and the Leeds School of Art, but at the age of 17 joined the army. Two years later he was demobilized, and found his views so radically changed that he was intensely dissatisfied with the work done at the Leeds School of Art. He therefore spent a short time teaching in various Castleford elementary schools, and then went to London, where he attended sculpture classes at the Royal College of Art. During a hiatus occasioned by the resignation of Professor Derwent Wood and his assistant, Mr. Moore was asked by the principal to carry on the class, and later he was appointed professor of sculpture at the college.
Mr. Moore is a vigorous craftsman who does not look to the popularizing of his work by the critics or the lay public, but believes that the esteem of him fellow artists is a more significant recognition. Although he produces a few pieces of realistic, or limitative, work, his bent is towards a form of art which, though derived from nature, is not purely representational. He is of the opinion, however, that a course of imitative drawing from nature is to the present generation, at least, almost a necessity.
In all his work Mr. Moore is guided by the limitations, and the possibilities of the particular medium in which he is working, and within these bounds he expresses his own sense of form rather than the conventions of form which the Greek sculpture typify. He believes that his art is best expressed in carving direct from the solid stone rather than in modelling, holding the conviction that the vogue for modelling among present-day sculptors is a retrogressive tendency responsible for the dearth of good sculpture in England. Mr. Moore thinks that a true sculptor should be able to produce a work of art unaided by the sense of eight, and from touch alone give expression to his sense of form and masses.
At a visit to his studio last Saturday, the gibe which is so often levelled at modern artists as to their lack of technical ability was at once given the lie by Mr. Moore’s wonderful studies and drawings in the naturalistic manner, and by a particular piece of work in concrete where be set out on an essay in portraiture, and which was so favourably commented upon by the critics at Mr. Moore’s recent exhibition. It becomes increasingly evident that the modern tendencies in art must be considered with a mind open and free from traditional prejudices.
Mr. Moore recently concluded a successful exhibition at the Warren Galleries, and is now arranging for an exhibition of his work in Berlin.